The National Press Club's International Correspondents Committee will present a special screening of “Harvest of Empire: The Untold Story of Latinos in America”, at 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 26, in the Conference Rooms.
Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Ill.), a strong advocate for pro- immigration reform who has succeeded in gaining significant bipartisan alliances on the issue, will give closing remarks after the film is shown.
Producer Wendy Thompson, who heads EVS Communications, and co-director/producer Eduardo Lopez, the award-winning producer of Linea Directa, the Spanish-language television series in the Washington, DC region, will take part in a Q&A session, which will be followed by a cash bar reception.
Tickets are free for Club members and $5 for non-members.
The documentary is generating strong reviews during initial showings across the nation. It lays out a historic picture of U.S. policy in Latin America, described by the producers as a ”look at the role that U.S. economic and military interests played intriggering an unprecedented wave of migration that is transforming our nation’s cultural and economic landscape."
The film is based on the book “Harvest of Empire: A History of Latinos in America” by Juan Gonzalez, the award-winning columnist for The Daily News since 1987, who is an investigative reporter and co-host of the radio and television program “Democracy Now!” The focus is on Mexico, Cuba, El Salvador, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Puerto Rico, which has commonwealth status as an unincorporated territory of the United States. At the beginning of the film, Gonzalez speaks about the social and political “actions that forced millions from that region to leave their homeland and journey north.”
In her review in The Washington Post, Stephanie Merry wrote,”For all the talk about immigration, rarely does the conversation veer into why so many Latinos have come to the United States. ‘Harvest of Empire’ attempts to fill in the gaps, and the reasons don’t include some nave notion about the streets being paved with gold.”
Rachel Saltz of the New York Times wrote, “Harvest of Empire has a journalistic pedigree and punch that comes from political advocacy…. The filmmakers retain touching faith that most Americans won’t tolerate injustice when they know about it. This film is meant to teach them.”